Sylvain Garcia
Product designer, photographer and surf enthusiast living in Sydney.


Brain dump & inspiration box.

Design Review, Bang & Olufsen. From wanting to return my product to loving it.

Needless to say, up until this morning, I wasn't happy with my H5 from Bang & Olufsen. After 2 weeks wearing them daily, the sound felt a bit underwhelming...and far from what the price point was supposed to deliver.

One of the best features of the app is the equaliser.  I can appreciate the design work that got into it to cater for a wide audience but it’s sad to see small design decisions ruining the user experience.

Minimalistic UI is good as long as you don’t overdo it. See, by using a big white button, you’re tricking me into thinking that moving the button is all I can do here. The power of this screen isn’t into moving the white button around. The fact that you can change the size of the button and drastically alter and tweak the sound as desired is where the value is.

So, why not giving me a queue about the resize feature of the button? It doesn’t take much, there are plenty of default resizing queues out there used everywhere on system apps.

Discovering that I could actually change the size of the button was a game changer for me. I went from being mildly disappointed with the quality of the sound (and ready to return my H5) to being almost impressed with what the earphones just became.

By charging me a premium price for your items, you’re building my expectation really high when it comes to hardware and software associated with your product. 

And don’t tell me that the resize feature of the button is explained in the last screen of your “help” menu, if you need your users to go through a tutorial to do anything on this screen, you’ve failed.

Two more things

  • Your "B&O PLAN PRESETS"…why didn’t you record presets with the button resized? I’m pretty sure 9 out of 10 users have played around with the presets. It would have been a great place to display the fact that the button in the equaliser can be resized and influences the sound when you do so.
  • And last but not least; Why can’t I save a preset as default? Do I REALLY have to open the app, select my earphones, select the equaliser and finally tap on the preset button to be able to toggle the profile I’d like to use 99% of the time?